In my other non-troll-poking life, I teach and coach debating, and over the last five years I have judged upwards of 200 debates at high school level. I do this much for the same reasons I run this blog: because I am regretful of my teenage behaviour (and if you’re the adjudicator I slagged off in Year 11 debating back in 2002, well, I’m sorry) and because the benefit to the community outweighs any cost it imposes on me.
Out of those hundreds of debates, I’ve only ever had one complaint (which didn’t amount to anything more than me apologising for what was perceived to be ‘harsh tone’ in feedback), but I’ve had dozens of parents, students and teachers thank me for my judgement and say that my feedback has been amongst the fairest and most useful they’ve ever received. I came pretty close to getting a second complaint last year, and it was all about the subject of vaccines. Continue reading